A lesson from a matchbox car

Jack, my three-year-old, has this bin of matchbox cars. When I hear that bin tip over, my heart sinks a bit. If you’re a mom of boys…you know the sound. The lego bin produces a similar sort of heart-dropping effect when you hear those little plastic weapons toys being dumped onto the floor.

There are a lot of cars in that bin. A. Lot. Matchbox cars are sure to top Jack’s list of most prized possessions. And the other day I got a glimpse of how precious these tiny little pieces of metal are to him. He ran out of his room, found me in the living room and begged me to help him find a missing car. He began describing this particular yellow car in great detail. I sat with him, rummaging through the pile and found multiple yellow cars. “here ya go buddy!” – “no, no that’s not it.”

By the fourth car, I’m thinking to myself, “Why is this yellow one so special? There can’t be much that’s unique about this one.”

But he was on a mission. He could not get this car out of his head. He had to find it.

It was one of those gentle reminders God gave me. “That’s how I feel about you.”

To me, the cars all looked the same. It was just another car; he had 60 more in the bin. And I reminded him of that a couple of times. But he didn’t want the 60 other cars. He wanted THAT one. Jack, being the keeper of the cars, knew when one was missing and he had to find it. And once we finally did find the car, he was as happy as could be and contently ran off to play.

“Then Jesus told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.” – Luke 15: 3-7



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